The controversy surrounding Aerosmith’s long time drummer Joey Kramer continues, as recent video footage has emerged showing security guards blocking the musician from entering the band’s rehearsal space. Kramer had sued the band earlier this week after he was forced to audition for the group, which he has been a member of since their foundation in 1970, following his disability leave.
Last year, Kramer had injured his shoulder and foot which left him unable to perform at some of the band’s recent Las Vegas residency shows. The band replaced him with his own drum technician John Douglas for these performances, however Kramer asserted that he was well enough to perform in the band’s upcoming gigs.
His lawsuit and this video come ahead of Aerosmith’s Grammy-sponsored MusiCares Person of the Year event, as well as their scheduled performance at the Grammy Awards this weekend. The band will be joined onstage by Run-DMC for “Walk This Way,” an influential 1980s collaborative track, which was a rap rock styled remix of Aerosmith’s 1975 hit of the same name.
Part of Kramer’s lawsuit asked a judge to reinstate him into the band immediately for these upcoming performances, however this request was denied. Kramer stated that the band prevented him from rejoining the group for these upcoming shows due to a perceived lack of “energy,” in the lawsuit. The band have also released a statement claiming that Kramer is not “emotionally and physically able to perform.”
“Joey Kramer is our brother; his wellbeing is of paramount importance to us,” the band said in a recent statement. “However he has not been emotionally and physically able to perform with the band.”
In a recent statement Kramer had stated that the band would not let him perform, however they allowed him to take photo-ops for the upcoming Grammy events. He declined stating that he would like to rejoin his band on stage as a professional musician.
Read Kramer’s full statement regarding the Judge’s decision here:
“Although I’m extremely disappointed by the Judge’s ruling today, I respect it. I knew filing a lawsuit was a bit of an uphill battle considering that the corporate documents don’t reference any process for a band member returning from an injury or illness. However, the band waited until January 15th to tell me that they weren’t letting me play at the awards ceremonies this week. I can hold my head high knowing that I did the right thing — to fight for my right to celebrate the band’s success that I have dedicated the better part of my life to helping build.
The truth speaks for itself. Ever since I injured my foot last August and went through many hours of physical therapy to heal, not once did the band in its entirety offer to rehearse with me. That is a fact. I was also sent the full rehearsal schedule on January 18th and flew to LA the next day to rehearse and have many texts and emails stating the band can’t wait for my return. That’s also a fact. When I showed up to rehearse, I was greeted by two security guards who prohibited me from entering.
The band’s offer to allow me to participate in this week’s MusiCares and Grammy celebrations for red carpet photo ops only, is appreciated; however, with a fill-in drummer playing on stage at two events honoring our collective musical contributions, it is extremely hurtful to me. I am a professional musician who is eager to return to my rightful place with Aerosmith.
I want to thank my fans for the incredible outpouring of support and for sharing my goal of taking my place on stage as one of the five founding members of Aerosmith and continuing to play the music I love.”
Photo Credit: Marisa Rose Ficara